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Instilling Peace in the Hearts and Minds of Filipino youth

If youth get their needs met by belonging to a Play for Peace Club, instead of from the gangs, the youth's energy will be used to contribute to the development of Cebu.

Irvin Torralba was the first Play for Peace Trainer in the Philippines, and when he brought the Play for Peace mission to the southern island of Cebu, it was his dream to address the violence of gang wars in the city. From Irvin’s efforts, there are currently three Play for Peace Clubs in Cebu, two in the city and one in a municipality south of Cebu. All three are doing programs that help youth develop leadership skills through workshops that bring together children through cooperative games.

All Clubs – led by the youth themselves - are working with established organizations, schools, government offices, and communities to bring the vision of a more peaceful community to life. Irvin has a great gift for connection and friendship. He is an inspiration not only for the youth, but also for the mentors; to keep improving their craft, to keep giving back to the community through service, and to share their experiences and knowledge. He does this by giving his time and talent for free in Play for Peace Trainers' workshops in Cebu when he comes home, in between his overseas work. His vision of bringing Play for Peace into war-torn Mindanao is a passion he has instilled into the hearts and minds of the mentors and youth facilitators of Play for Peace in Cebu. Irvin was the 2014 Michael J. Terrien Service Award recipient as a result of his important contribution to growing the Play for Peace Community. See these photos for his award dinner at the Association of Experiential Education Conference in Chattanooga, Tennessee in the fall of 2014.

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